Marc Johnson Shades of Jade Review

Album. Released 2005.  

BBC Review

Top bassist Johnson assembles an allstar cast including Joe Lovano, Eliane Elias and...

Peter Marsh 2005

Marc Johnson has two things going for him; he's a wonderful bass player, and he's got some big names in his address book. That much is obvious from this assured, beautiful record.

Pianist Eliane Elias is Johnson's key collaborator here, both as a writer and a soloist of immense delicacy. The album centres around the trio of Johnson, Elias and Joey Baron, with strong contributions from Joe Lovano and John Scofield. It's mostly hushed, delicate stuff, though around half an hour in things shift up a gearwith the Monkish "Blue Nefertiti".

But it's the ballads (and especially Elias's poised, emotionally charged soloing) that stay in the memory long after the CD's finished. While this music might not change your world, it'll feel likea better place while you're listening to it. That can't be bad.

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